05 September 2012

San Antonio Body Shop

I was reluctant to put up this photo for fear that someone would think that I am having fun with the primitive appearance of this little shop. Quite the contrary.

San Antonio Body Shop is located up the street and around the corner a half block on Calle Allende. It is right across the street from San Antonio Plaza, which was behind my back as I took this picture on a Sunday afternoon. There are a couple large automobile repair shops in town, one maintained by Uniroyal for example. However, most automobile repair of any sort is done in the street outside little shops such as this.

The men who work here specialize in body work and especially painting. They are magicians with a paint gun in my opinion. Someone else must share that opinion because this shop has the concession on repainting the taxi cabs in town. The test green on the wall and door is the color of the taxis here. I often go up to the plaza during the week, get a cold coke, and sit down to watch these guys work for awhile. I am a great admirer of the work ethic from a safe distance.

If you have had the misfortune to have to go to a body and fender shop up north recently, you know that they are usually pristine now, particularly the paint rooms that remind one of surgical suites. This is primarily because of the strict environmental regulations applicable to automobile painting up there. When one gets accustomed to this over the years, however, one forgets that it used to be done in a much simpler way with much simpler equipment.

These men mask and repaint the taxis and other cars in the open doorway of that shop. They are up against a good deal of ambient dust during most of the year. Nonetheless, they do a masterful job. Cars come out of there looking as if they have just come off the line at the factory with the original paint job.

Apparently, they have a new man who claims to be an expert in automobile electrical work, too. There is now a sign up on the corner touting this as well as that sign on the wall to the right. I have not yet figured out which one he is. I guess I will have to ask.

No comments: